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Would a hero risk his life and soul to save an innocent? Phoenix, a warrior who once abandoned dark magic, faces that choice when a suffering friend needs his help. He's determined to tap into his dark heritage without consequences, but his brothers are skeptical. Meanwhile, Storm Queen, bound to a hotel and feeling like an outsider, finds her world shaken when a mysterious man from her dreams crosses into her reality, sparking urgent questions and intense desires.
- Fated Mates
- Alpha Hero
What would a hero risk to save an innocent? His life? His soul?
Phoenix locked down his addiction to dark magic and rejected his witch heritage millennia ago, but when he's the only warrior suited to help a suffering friend, the temptation is too great to ignore. He believes he can access that dark part of himself to save another and survive unscathed. His brothers aren't so sure.
Despite decades of effort, Storm Queen never quite fits in. Is it an adoption thing? A witch thing? Is it because she’s bound to the hotel and hasn’t been outside in years? When a beautiful, mountain of a man visits her in her dreams, her questions grow more urgent and her desires more undeniable. When she shows up in real life, her world is blown apart.
Intro Into Chapter One
Intro Into Chapter One
Phoenix sat back on his heels, hands relaxed on his
muscled thighs, his mind clear of all worry and guilt. Tonight was the night.
It had to be. He hated lying to Seth. Helping Jules’s kid through his time of
transition was important, no argument, but he and Seth didn’t keep
secrets—ever—not even to spare the other pain. They’d vowed that to one another
a long time ago, when secrets had nearly killed them both.
At the thought of their past, his chest tightened.
Damn. This assignment was dredging up shit he thought he’d dealt with centuries
ago. So much for meditating himself to inner peace.
At this rate, he’d never get upstairs.
Taking another stab at it, Phoenix drew a cleansing
breath and focused on the pentacle portal mosaic on the far wall of the chapel.
The gateway to the Choir was a thing of beauty. Ringo, the teen artist and most
recent addition to their dysfunctional Nephilim brotherhood, came through for
Zander on all the artistic contributions to the new family home.
Despite knowing Ringo possessed divine talents, they
were no less awed by the kid’s mad skills. Danel’s pride burned even hotter
because not only was the kid his Nephilim brother, they were both the cast-off
begotten of the Archangel Gabriel.
That made them blooded brothers. Like him and Seth.
Well, not exactly like them. He and Seth were
even more than blooded brothers. They were twins—two essential parts making up
one solid unit.
And he was lying to him. Yep. What an asshole he was.
Shit, keeping things from his other half cleaved his
heart in two. Phoenix’s chest tightened further still. Damn, he needed to quiet
his mind, or he wasn’t going anywhere.
Giving up on finding his Zen, he rose from the
meditation circle in the center of the room and pulled out the big guns—
After focusing on his breathing, he stretched his
hands out before him and swung his body in controlled movement. He let his mind
go free, his body taking over in the repetitive stages of movement his muscles
knew by rote.
As he eased around the room, he took in the
Golden flames pulsed atop the wide pillar candles on
the altar table. Ancient tomes of Enoch lined the hickory cabinets and lent him
strength. The image of Lady Divinity filled him with love and devotion.
Everything about the design of this chapel brought
them to spiritual harmony. Far more than the chapel on the second floor of
Trying to connect with your core self and silence the
beasts within was difficult with dark-electronica and cries of orgasms
thrumming from the hedonist club below.
This room emitted serenity. Grace.
The soothing strength of their patron lady herself. He
focused on the candles—the glow of the flames, the aura of heat they gave off.
His beast grew still, the constant war within called
to a temporary truce. He completed the circuit, padded barefoot past the altar,
lit a hickory stick, and then made his way to the seven-foot closed pentacle on
the far wall.
With reverent precision, he touched the flame to each
wick of each golden candle affixed to the five points of the pentacle.
Turning to face the room, he stepped into the closed
circle of the portal. The tiny colored tiles of the mosaic were cool and smooth
on his bare back. He entered the sacred space as per tradition: left foot,
fire; right-hand, air; left-hand, water; right foot, earth. When his head
touched the wall behind him, in the position of spirit, he closed his eyes and
recited the incantation.
By the closed pentagram I bear
By Water, Fire, Earth, and Air
Ruled by Spirit as all should be
I speak my vow, so mote it be
Admit me Powers to your realm
As trials on earth seek to whelm
I pledge myself to Lady Devine
And serve her will, till end of time.
A recent frequent flyer in the realm of Powers, the
portal guardians didn’t even blink at his arrival. When his footing solidified
on the arrival podium, he stepped down, claimed one of the golden tunics from
the wall, and slipped into the transition zone.
He had the drill down pat. Get nakey, have all his
parts and pieces tickled and blown under the ethereal air vents, and then don
the sacred robe of ‘visitor’ to the realm of Powers.
Once decontaminated enough to share the oxygen of the
angels, of course.
After tying the silk rope belt, folding his pants, and
sliding his belongings into a cubby, he checked himself in the mirror. It was
bizarre to see himself untouched by his warrior life.
Here, he bore no scars, tattoos, or hints of his
Being amongst the heavens meant he was whole again. It
gave him a glimpse of the man he could have been if life had been different.
“You are late, warrior.”
Phoenix turned at the sound of Thea’s voice and smiled
at the female who’d grown to be not only his research assistant but a friend.
Tall and curvy in all the right places, there was no question that she
possessed the genetics of the Heavens. Mouthwateringly stunning, any male would
give his left nut to claim her as his own.
He included himself in that category, though he knew
with the demons and violence within him, he’d never deserve her. “It’s getting
harder for me to get away,” he said, thinking of how much Seth had protested
hitting the bars without him tonight. “I’m here now. What have you found?”
The brightness in Thea’s eyes dimmed, and he realized
his mistake. “Forgive me, beautiful one, in my eagerness to fulfill my duty, I
neglected to mention how lovely you look this night. You’ve cut and changed
your hair. It suits you.”
Thea’s smile shone as radiant as the morning sunrise
as she touched the fine golden strands where they brushed the fabric gathered
over her bare shoulders. “Thank you, and you are forgiven. How could any female
hold a grudge after receiving such a lovely compliment?”
Phoenix let Thea take his wrist and pull him to her
research station. Her station partner, Arik, cast him a cool glance and, as he
always did, stood to meet his gaze eye-to-eye. “Back again, are you, Watcher?”
Phoenix ignored the slight of speaking his moniker
with harsh disdain. Half of the people in the realms felt the same. Nephilim
were loathed as often as praised. “Yes, and I will continue to return until we
find the answers we need.”
Arik smiled. “Then tonight should be the end of it. I
cannot say I mourn the news. Thea and I have other tasks piling up for
attention. It will be good to have my partner back once again.”
Thea patted the male’s arm. “Hush now, Arik. If you
give us a few minutes, I promise Phoenix and I shall wrap things up. Then, you
and I shall tackle our work together.”
Arik shot him a look over Thea’s head and retreated.
Powers regulated chaos amongst the human realm, but
they also monitored anything other affecting humanity. Other meant all
things Otherworld, magical, or defying human explanation.
Needless to say, they were busy.
“I’m sorry,” Phoenix said, gesturing to the steady
stream of data creeping up the screen of her station. “It seems I’ve taken up
far more time than I should have.”
“Ignore Arik,” she said, her smile soft and sweet. “He
acts the part of my protective older brother. He’s harmless enough.”
Phoenix doubted that ‘older brother’ was the role Arik
was vying for, but that was none of his business.